Hurting Near Christmas? 10 Tips to Hope Again by Stacie Ruth Stoelting

Renee Ann Smith —  December 19, 2010 — 14 Comments

If you’re grieving, hurting, or even just a little blue, today’s post is for you. These words from Stacie Ruth really spoke to my heart! May they bless yours, also.

And, remember, Stacie Ruth and the other Pearl Girls are offering a giveaway. Fill out the quick form at the link located at the bottom of this post to be entered to win a pearl necklace, bracelet, and earrings.  The pearls are meant to be a tangible reminder of God’s grace to us all!

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Hurting Near Christmas? 10 Tips to Hope Again
by Stacie Ruth Stoelting

Feeling sad this Christmas? Hey, I know the feeling. In fact, many programs have interviewed me to share about it! Last year, I tried particularly hard to share stories and tips on how to cope with grief during the holidays: I wrote a feature for CBN.com, Coping with Grief at Christmas, visited and counseled grieving people, etc.

Then irony hit: Near Christmas, two people I loved died within two days (December 15-16, 2009).

Are you or a loved one hurting during the holidays? I can relate. But let me encourage you: Jesus remains faithful! As real as my pain was, He met my needs and comforted me with peace unexplainable. I’m serious. He’s real!

Before I continue with tips, let me share this: If you feel suicidal, contact an emergency counseling service like the New Life Call Center at 1-800-NEW-LIFE(639-5433).

10 Tips for Hurting Hearts to Hope and Cope at Christmastime

1.    Realize and internalize it: God still loves you and wants to hear from you. He wants you to know that there is a Way out of your pit of despair. The Way is Jesus.

2.    Sometimes, our suffering causes us to forget Him. Remember that He understands you. He suffered more than any of us when we bore the weight of every sin and pain on the cross! In fact, Is. 53:3 describes Jesus: “He was despised and rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.”

Think of it: He took your punishment and pain on the cross. He was your capital punishment Substitute! And your Deliverer -your Rescuer- wants to hear from you. His heart hurts with yours. Will you pour your heart out to Him now? He’ll pour His love in where the fear previously resided. Let Jesus inside. Do you know Jesus on a personal, one-to-One basis?  Visit here to learn why Jesus was born to die and how to be born again. (Hey, Jesus said it: “You must be born again.”)

3.    Rather than mere gifts, make a Christmas prayer list of other hurting people. Then pray for them and request prayer for yourself, too. Contact your church. Tap into ministries (including CBN.com) that offer extra prayer support. And feel free to join my prayer e-group at www.PrayingPals.org or on Facebook by clicking here.

4.    End the Christmas comparison game. Don’t compare your Christmas to your neighbor’s. Don’t compare your Christmas to past celebrations.

5.    Center on the Savior! This year, trade a superficial Christmas for a real one. Deepen your appreciation for the true Christmas: the arrival of Jesus Christ to banish the effects of sin and death!

6.    Whatever your loss or pain, open up and let God be your Gain. Maybe your pain comes from another cause: a divorce, a devastating diagnosis, a job loss…the list extends. God offers to be your Counselor, your Father, your Healer, your Provider. Let Him answer your heart’s cry.

7.    Love on people. Even if you don’t feel like it, prayerfully do something for someone else who is hurting.

8.    Remember: Feelings change. God doesn’t. Loved ones’ deaths never kill His love for you. God’s immeasurable, unconditional love still flows to you! When you know Jesus, you know eternal love and security. Nothing separates you from His love! 

“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39, ESV)

9.    Realize the reality of the sudden reunion. Holidays exacerbate the feeling of long separation from our loved ones in Heaven. Does it feel like it will take forever for you to see your loved one in Heaven? Be encouraged: Jesus IS coming again and it will be a time you don’t expect! So the fact that you feel like it won’t happen soon is a good thing!  Once reunited, it will feel like no time transpired. All sadness will be entirely removed!

10.    When Jesus comes back to earth, it will be a celebration greater than any previous Christmas you’ve ever experienced!

For believers, losses hurt but never win. We will celebrate Jesus together -and it will be glorious “for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.” (I John 5:4, NIV)

In that Day, all believers will be able to jubilantly say, “Merry Christmas to all and to all the true Light!”

Additional Help: Ready for some practical tips for coping with grief at Christmastime? Here’s one: Rearrange furniture to reduce absence reminders. To read this tip and others found in another of my CBN.com’s articles: Coping with Grief at Christmas, visit www.CBN.com.

Going thru a rough time? Join Stacie Ruth’s prayer group at www.PrayingPals.org.

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About Stacie: Stacie Ruth knows pain, but she also knows Jesus! After Stacie Ruth met Jesus, her life blossomed with true joy and purpose. Life’s blows hurt her, but Jesus heals and strengthens her. Now an author, actress, and recording artist, she laughs at the irony and praises God, who uses unlikely people…like herself.  Discover why she’s written a book at age 15, sung/spoken for the 43rd President, been pictured in major media (i.e. The New York Times, USA Today), and keynoted conferences since she was a teenager. To watch video clips, worship Jesus with music from her album, or get in touch with her ministry for women, visit www.brightlightministries.com.

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A three strand pearl necklace will be given away on New Year’s Day. All you need to do to have a chance of winning is {FILL OUT THIS QUICK ENTRY FORM}You may return to this post and enter once a day! The winner will be announced on New Year’s Day on the Pearl Girls Blog (http://margaretmcsweeney.blogspot.com).

12 Pearls of Christmas Series and contest sponsored by Pearl Girls®. For more information, please visit www.pearlgirls.info

Renee Ann Smith

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I teach literature in a Christian high school by day and write inspirational fiction by night. I love to share heart-touching quotes and stories here on my blog. So glad you stopped by!

14 responses to Hurting Near Christmas? 10 Tips to Hope Again by Stacie Ruth Stoelting

  1. Following from the blog hop. Hope you can follow back.
    God Bless,
    Shelley
    Finding My Life in Faith

  2. Love it today. I think if we could end the comparison game, we would all be better off. it is so easy to compare ourselves with who we imagine people to be, the problem is, in all of our lives, we will always be able to find someone else that is better and someone else that is worse. comparison doesn’t help anyone.

  3. Hi, Renee. I am passing by and following from the Monday Mingle at ToughCookieMommy.com Thank you for participating and I hope to see you there every Monday. Have a happy holiday!

  4. Beautiful post and wonderful tips.

  5. Beautiful! There is hope and God is so good:) enjoy this holiday season! xoxo

  6. Hi, following you from Magical Monday Blog Hop. I sure needed this post. Going through a hard family time and was on the verge of a major pitty party. All it takes is a quick reminder of what God is there for, and it’s so easy to get strength and comfort and encouragement from Him!

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